As a member of Generation-Y and heavy user of the numerous forms of social media, I bare witness to the power and influence that social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have on our current society. President Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential election was the first widespread use of these various social networking sites as a means to campaign and increase interaction and community engagement. At the time, this seemed to be an innovative way of attracting young voters that used social networking sites for communication purposes. The success of the “Yes We Can” digital movement took the country by storm and now this vehicle for mass communication is being replicated by elected officials and various community organizations in order to bridge the technological gap between the governing body and their constituents.
It is evident that Social Media has opened a gateway of instantaneous communication, but I seek to question whether or not Social Media can truly coexist with the fundamental values of our government? With this said, I will analyze what the pros and cons of Social Media and question whether or not the government is better or worse with it.
Everyone has seen firsthand how the Presidential Cabinet has been proactive with their use of Social Media, whether it be with the Twitter Town Hall that took place this summer or with his weekly twitter and Facebook updates on current policy he is seeking to implement. A great majority of people find these updates very useful and thus bringing about a different form of political involvement, but there are also many skeptics that feel that he is over-stepping his boundaries. I wish to divulge into this question by deciphering the proper role of the president, and by deciding whether or not this behavior is beneficial to our government. All in all, I seek to prove that social media will merely supplement traditional campaign and legislative methods, and will essentially strengthen our democratic institutions. I would appreciate any feedback or comments toward this topic. I look forward to working with all of you this year.